Montana Farm to School program nutritionist Mary Stein told a legislative interim committee that very little processing is needed to make raw agricultural products ready for use in institutional food programs, such as school lunches. The committee also is considering liability issues in food safety, and Stein said bringing food production to the local level would help contain potential outbreaks of food-related illness.
Gaining more than two pounds over the holidays is too much, says nutritionist Jim Severino, who adds that it is not so much what people eat as it is how much they eat. Some tips for the holidays include keeping recipes simple and limiting toppings, choosing low-calorie or low-sodium items when possible, and taking a walk after dinner.
Nonprofit food and nutrition organization Oldways has created its fifth nutritional pyramid using cultural models, this one focused on African-Americans.
"We are introducing the African Heritage Diet Pyramid, because the traditional diets of the African Diaspora ... offer a powerful, affordable, healthy eating model," says Sara Baer-Sinnott, president of Oldways. The pyramid is based on leafy greens, vegetables, grains and starches.
Studies on the health effects of coffee have shown it can be good and bad, but experts say that overall, the benefits outweigh the risks. Alberto Ascherio, a nutrition professor at the Harvard School of Public Health, says coffee comes in so many forms and strengths that it can be difficult to determine its effects, especially in individual studies.
The University of Maryland and state officials have announced the Institute for a Healthiest Maryland, which aims to address health issues including hypertension, high cholesterol and childhood obesity through policy changes. The institute plans to work closely with local health departments.